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guido 19d8e02c82 changes to make SVN script git ready 1 year ago
trunk changes to make SVN script git ready 1 year ago add explanation for weird name 2 years ago add explanation for weird name 2 years ago

What is this and what does it do?

In this repository, there are some scripts that may help coordinators of FSFE local groups to promote their events on the pages of FSFE and elsewhere.

It got its weird name from ticket 451 in FSFE’s tracker.

As regular meetings usually require regular announcements, the wording is mostly the same. The concept is that there is one file which contains variables (e.g. date, time, location) and a few templates where these variables are inserted and a few scripts that publish the snippets for the particular event.

Once everything is set up, the file with the variables (corefacts) can be modified and the scripts be fired off with one command which will result to:

  • publishing the event and pre-defined translations of it on
  • sent periodic reminders per email or social media automatically at predefined times relative to the event.

The following has been tested on a fresh Debian installation (debian~version~: 8.4) with internet connectivity and should thus work on any Debian based system and probably any other *nix machine.


write access to FSFE

You need write access to FSFE’s svn repository to make use of this script. I asked fellowship hackers to create an extra account with access to the events directory only. You may consider a similar step.

Packages: subversion and at

You’ll need: subversion, at (and optional to conveniently get this and keep updated: git).

(sudo) apt-get install subversion at # git

These scripts

Either via git from repository:

git clone

or download tar.gz folder


and exctract it.

Setting up the stage

Change to directory trunk

cd fsfe-web-issue-451/trunk/

move/copy the “fsferm” directory to YOURGROUPNAME

cp -r fsferm YOURGROUPNAME

You may want to edit the templates in YOURGROUPNAME/snippets and adopt them to your needs. Feel free to delete some languages you don’t want to maintain.

install missing locales

(you may need to install locales utf-8 packages for the languages you want to maintain

On Debian, you can do this as root:

dpkg-reconfigure locales

and chose the languages you want to support. For FSFE webpages, it should be utf-8 only. FSFERM currently uses:


edit SVN options section in “”

  • change \$basedir to dir that contains repo

SVN URI - the root svn dir


you may be asked to verify the fingerprint of the certificate.

Configure subversion that you won’t need to type in a password. It is suggested to configure svn for password encryption according to the documentation.

Also possible, but least secure: put the plaintext password into the script.

edit “corefacts”

open the file “corefacts” and edit according to planned event


It has to be the name you chose for the folder (previously fsferm) as the script will look into that folder for snippets and other group specific data


The date of the event in Form YearMonthDay The sample shows: September 3rd, 2014

location="Weinhaus Stegmann"

The name of the venue your event will take place


The name of the city or village your event will take place

Depending on your “snippets” this section may contain more or less variables.

run the event-auto-commit script for the first time


from now on, you just need to change the variables in “corefacts” and run event-auto-commit afterwards. It should just run through now without any interaction and submit newly generated event entries to the svn.

If not, drop a note to coordinators@


when this script is executed, the data from corefacts will be used to create tweets, dents, emails to be published/sent at pre-defined times relative to the date of the event.

Currently, there are scripts for mail, Twitter and Diaspora:


Change the texts according to you needs.